Cullompton's FA Vase controversy

PUBLISHED: 10:00 08 October 2008 | UPDATED: 22:25 15 June 2010

CULLOMPTON RANGERS and Willand Rovers have been the centre of attention at FA Headquarters in London this week when their FA Vase, 1st round tie, played at Speeds Meadow, Cullompton, last Saturday, was declared null and void .

CULLOMPTON RANGERS and Willand Rovers have been the centre of attention at FA Headquarters in London this week when their FA Vase, 1st round tie, played at Speeds Meadow, Cullompton, last Saturday, was declared 'null and void' by the FA Competitions Committee.The game was locked at 0-0 with just five minutes of extra time remaining when Rangers were awarded a penalty. Former Feniton and Ottery St Mary striker Mark Simic stepped up and tucked it away past Brian Cann in the Rangers' goal.Simic and his team mates peeled off to celebrate but the Plymouth-based referee announced: "Encroachment, no goal, restart with a goal kick".The match ended five minutes later and extraordinary scenes broke out as the host club protested that they had been wronged. The match referee was supported by one of his linesman that he had indeed been correct as the laws had been changed within the past two year.After much investigation, it was discovered that there was indeed a law change within the past two years with regard penalty kicks - but only in mini soccer.Meanwhile the Football Association got involved, deemed the original game to be null and void, ordered the cancellation of the proposed Tuesday night replay and instructed the two sides to meet again next Tuesday evening at Speeds Meadow to play the original game again.Willand Rovers keeper Brian Cann said: "It's barmy, what ever happened to the adage, 'the referee's word is final", whilst Cullompton Rangers Secretary Marcus Scott said: "We feel robbed of the chance of a place in the 2nd round and the £1,000 prize money. We felt at the time the official had made the wrong decision and the FA's decision to stage the game again vindicates our position.


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